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Large crater appears at the 'end of the world'

By The Siberian Times reporter
15 July 2014

Mysterious 'gigantic' hole in remote region spotted by helicopters over gas-rich Yamal peninsula.

The crater is large enough for several Mi-8 helicopters to fly into it. Picture: Konstantin Nikolaev

The striking puncture in the earth is believed to be up to 80 metres wide but its depth is not estimated yet. A scientific team has been sent to investigate the hole and is due to arrive at the scene on Wednesday.

The cause of its sudden appearance in Yamal - its name means the 'end of the world' in the far north of Siberia - is not yet known, though one scientific claim is that global warming may be to blame.

There is additionally speculation it could be caused by a space object - perhaps a meteorite - striking earth or that it is a sinkhole caused by collapsing rock beneath the hole caused by as yet unknown factors.

The giant hole appeared close to a forest some 30 kilometres from Yamal's biggest gas field Bovanenkovo. Experts are confident that a scientific explanation will be found for it and that it is not - as one web claim suggested - evidence 'of the arrival of a UFO craft' to the planet. 

A report and footage highlighted by Zvezda TV says the dark colour of the crater indicates 'some temperature processes', without explaining more what they may mean. Others say that the darkening around the inner rim indicates its formation was accompanied by severe burning scorching the edges.  

Some observers believe water or dry soil is seen falling into the cavity.

Large crater appears at the 'end of the world'


Large crater appears at the 'end of the world'


Large crater appears at the 'end of the world'


Large crater appears at the 'end of the world'


Large crater appears at the 'end of the world'

Initial reports and images were suspected to be fakes, but the hole is a real phenomenon and it is believed to have been formed around two years ago. Pictures: Konstantin Nikolaev

There is agreement that soil around the hole was thrown out of the crater, large enough for several Mi-8 helicopters to fly into it - not that they have. 

The expedition organised by the Yamal authorities includes two experts from the Centre for the Study of the Arctic and one from Cryosphere Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences. They plan to take samples of soil, air and water from the scene.

They will be accompanied by a specialist from the Emergencies Ministry.

A spokesman for the ministry's Yamal branch ruled out a meteorite but said it was too early to say what cause the gigantic hole in the earth. 

'We can definitely say that it is not a meteorite. No details yet,' said a spokesman. 

Initial reports and images were suspected to be fakes, but the hole is a real phenomenon and it is believed to have been formed around two years ago.

Engineer Konstantin Nikolaev from Yugra is one of those to have filmed it from a helicopter.  

Anna Kurchatova from Sub-Arctic Scientific Research Centre thinks the crater was formed by a water, salt and gas mixture igniting an underground explosion, the result of global warming. She postulates that gas accumulated in ice mixed with sand beneath the surface, and that this was mixed with salt - some 10,000 years ago this area was a sea.

Global warming, causing an 'alarming' melt in the permafrost, released gas causing an effect like the popping of a Champagne bottle cork, she suggests.

Given the gas pipelines in this region such a happening is potentially dangerous.

Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug


in the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug


in the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug


in the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug

Sights of Yamal - aerial view of tundra, road to Bovanenkovo gas field, opening ceremony of the Bovanenkovo, and reindeers. Pictures: Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug administration

The Yamal Peninsula in the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug is a strategic oil and gas bearing region of Russia.  

It is Russia's main production area for gas and the Bovanenkovo field is of central importance to gas supplies from Siberia to the world. 

The gas field was discovered in 1972 and developed by Gazprom starting production in 2012. The Yamal peninsula is bordered by the Kara Sea - Baydaratskaya Bay - to the west, and the Gulf of Ob on the east. It extends some 700 kilometres over mainly permafrost. 

The area is famous for its reindeer herds and migratory birds. 

The Nenets and Khanty reindeer herders hold about half a million domestic reindeer.

The remains of ancient woolly mammoths have been found in this enchanting territory. 

Comments (172)

That is deffinately an exit
Stephen Thomas, Milton Florida USA
19/07/2014 02:07
6
0
That is an exit hole not an entrance
Steve, USA
19/07/2014 02:02
7
1
Isn't this where the Millenium Falcon flew into to avoid the Empire?
Mike T, Massachusetts, USA
18/07/2014 21:58
10
3
The revelation is right, Gog and Magog eventually dig it...this announces the begining of the end of the world
mushegaa, Syracuse - NY
18/07/2014 20:55
3
2
I think WE ALL HAVE to WAIT and see what is going to happen, before we can JUDGE!!!
Prince Walter, Ghana
18/07/2014 20:18
3
2
crater may be due to incorrect landing of UFO disc
kuldip mann, longowal India
18/07/2014 17:19
3
8
crater may be due to incorrect landing of UFO disc
kuldip mann, longowal India
18/07/2014 17:14
4
7
It's clearly an UFO opening. Clear clean round edges, burnt by entry in an barely populated corner of civilization. Go get that little green guy inside. What are you waiting for? He might be hurt or starving! Hurry up!
Carl Johnson, Los Angeles
18/07/2014 14:22
7
5
what if the silver surfer visited our planet??
carter slade, texas
18/07/2014 10:38
5
8
Scientists have no idea what caused it or what it is, but they do know that whatever it is, it was due to global warming.
Morgan Wright, USA
18/07/2014 10:32
21
6
Are there any tours organised to go visit the phenomenon. If so, please let us know how to book.
peter dooley, swampland
18/07/2014 10:25
8
2
How many of you with all the answer's, have actually visited the crater in question?
Lenny, USA
18/07/2014 09:50
6
3
I think that crater is "Heal".
Samuel Chhangte, India, Mizoram
18/07/2014 09:30
2
6
Its obvious a sleeping giant alien creature has made its way to the surface, and soon we'll need the Avengers to save the world.
IslandStruck, Australia
18/07/2014 09:11
4
5
People want to believe so hard that shit can't just happen naturally. I wonder how many people here are scientist? How many of you study earth science and geology? So many of you think you know better than any one else and yet I'm sure hardly any of you have any applicable education to back it up. Lasers, doomsday weapons, secret oil drilling, aliens, FFS people get back to reality. Maybe if half of you didn't already know everything you could actually learn something.
Cross, Southern California
18/07/2014 09:10
8
1

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